All U.S.-registered Cessna 208 Caravans are covered by a new AD, the result of several accidents during operations in icing conditions, including six accidents in the previous two icing seasons and nine events in the past few months.
Preventing helicopter fuel contamination is the topic addressed in a March 24 edition of the FAA’s Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin. According to the bulletin, between 1998 and 2004 there were at least 21 rotorcraft accidents due to fuel contamination. The bulletin reminds operators and suppliers to adhere to manufacturer, preflight and maintenance procedures for detecting and eliminating fuel contamination.
NTSB recommendations issued last month call on the FAA to step up its oversight of Part 135 operators to ensure that improper record-keeping practices are identified and corrected “before accidents occur.” Additionally, the FAA should establish “specific criteria” regarding the number of accidents or incidents that would trigger increased FAA oversight of a particular operator.
The Gulfstream G350, FAA certified in November, has received validation by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), enabling operators to register the business jet in any of the 25 European Union countries. The first G350 is scheduled to enter service this fall.
The first three months of this year saw a significant increase in fatalities involving business jets and turboprops compared with the same period last year, according to figures compiled by safety analyst Robert E. Breiling Associates of Boca Raton, Fla. In the first quarter of this year, the U.S.-registered fleet of turbine-powered business airplanes experienced 22 accidents, including five fatal ones that killed 24 passengers and crew.
With accidents decreasing by 8.7 percent and fatal accidents dropping by 11.6 percent, last year was the safest year for U.S. general aviation since the end of World War II.
Cessna received certification for its Citation Sovereign from both the European Aviation Safety Agency and the JAA, enabling the twinjet to be certified and registered in 25 nations adhering to EASA regulations and the 10 countries still following JAA procedures. Cessna also claimed the Sovereign received the first-ever EASA type certification data sheet for noise. The Sovereign received FAA certification in June last year.
A Government Accountability Office (GAO) study of five foreign ATC service providers contends that since “commercialization,” they have maintained safety, controlled costs and improved efficiency. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association emphasized that controllers in Cleveland alone handle more operations annually than all of Canada’s controllers handle. It is difficult to compare the U.S.
Beech King Air 300, Daytona Beach, Fla., April 14, 2004–The pilot’s inadequate management of the airplane’s fuel system, resulting in fuel starvation, a loss of engine power, a forced landing and damage to the airplane was the probable cause of the accident.
Learjet 25, Amarillo, Texas, July 1, 2005–Landing at Amarillo International Airport with a 17-knot crosswind, the 7,300-hour captain was unable to maintain directional control of the Air America Jet Charter Learjet. The airplane struck a runway distance marker and ran off the runway to the left. The left wingtip tank fuel load was 200 to 300 pounds heavier than the load in the right wingtip.